Relic Blade DW

A Relic Blade of the Deathwatch

A Relic Blade is an ancient and incredibly powerful two-handed melee weapon used by the superhuman warriors of the Adeptus Astartes that often takes the form of a master-crafted sword or axe. These weapons were sheathed in an armour-sundering power field designed for tearing through the heaviest of armour. Remembrancer works from the Horus Heresy era depict these magnificent Power Weapons in the hands of the great heroes and villains of that lost age, and accounts can be found through the  millennia of how the wielders of Relic Blades turned the tide of key battles. Some Relic Blades have been crafted in the long centuries since the end of the Heresy in commemoration of other momentous events in the Imperium's or an individual Space Marine Chapter's history. Only a precious handful have survived the passage of time and these are reserved for Astartes of long and faultless service who have earned the right to wield a Relic Blade. These elite veterans are warriors without peer, who have proven themselves many times over in countless battles and have defeated the direst of the Imperium's foes. Relic Blades take various forms, but are always a great, two-handed weapon of some fashion. Often, these rare and extremely powerful blades can be found in the hands of Chapter Masters, members of a Space Marine Honour Guard, a company Captain, and Vanguard Veterans.

Notable Relic Blades

  • Axe of Morkai - This mighty weapon is borne into battle by the Great Wolf Logan Grimnar, of the Space Wolves Chapter. The Axe Morkai is an ancient artefact, thrumming with the power of the Warp, a battlefield trophy taken from a defeated Chaos Champion by the Great Wolf himself. Grimnar had the Chapter's Iron Priests reforge the deadly axe into the likeness of the twin-headed wolf-god Morkai, the guardian of the gates of the afterlife in the myths of the people of the Space Wolves' homeworld, Fenris.
  • Black Spear - A deadly relic-weapon of unknown provenance, the Black Spear is similar in some regards to the sacred arms of the Adeptus Custodes. The spear is a Power Weapon of remarkable potency, able to pierce even Terminator Armour. It also incorporates a single-shot laser weapon sufficiently potent enough to be used as an anti-tank weapon if needed. The Black Spear is currently wielded by Chapter Master Asterion Moloc and is the ceremonial badge of office of every Master of the Minotaurs.
  • Black Sword of Sigismund - The Legendary Black Sword wielded by First Captain Sigismund of the Imperial Fists Legion, and later the first High Marshal of the Black Templars Chapter, is kept in a place of honour in the most sacred chapel of the Black Templars.
  • Black Sword - Paired with the Armour of Faith, the traditional weapon of the Black Templars' Emperor's Champion is the Black Sword. A massive two-handed Power Sword, blessed by the Chapter's Chaplains, it becomes a deadly weapon in the hands of the chosen of the Black Templars. Such is the skill with which this weapon has been crafted that the Emperor's Champion can either wield it two-handed or one-handed as a normal Astartes Power Sword.
  • Blade of Caliban - Blades of Caliban are Chapter relics of the Dark Angels and their Unforgiven Successor Chapters. Each has its own honourable heritage. Only the Champions of each Dark Angels company, having performed heroic and faultless duty, earn the right to wield one of these unique Power Swords.
  • Blade of the Scorpion - The Blade of the Scorpion is a Power Sword and a powerful relic of war, having long been the chosen weapon of each successive Lord High Commander (Chapter Master) of the Red Scorpions. This great sword is perfectly balanced, having been made of micro-folded Adamantium, etched at a molecular level with liturgies of harm and destruction. The blade can cleave through even Ceramite plate unassisted when wielded with a Space Marine's superhuman strength. But what makes the Blade of the Scorpion so special is its disruption field generator, which is far more powerful than that found on a standard Power Weapon and which gives the blade its devastating strength. In skilled hands, the sword can bisect even a Chaos Terminator in a single blow or shatter granite without so much as marring the blade's mirror-like finish. The Blade of the Scorpion is currently wielded by Carab Culln, the current Lord High Commander of the Red Scorpions Chapter.
  • Blade Encarmine - The Blade Encarmine is a revered relic of the Blood Angels Chapter that is an artefact of Belarius, a servant of the Primarch Sanguinius during the time of the Great Crusade and the Horus Heresy, which was given to him by the Primarch himself. Berlarius went on to become the first Chapter Master of the Blood Angels after the death of Sanguinius at the hands of Horus aboard his flagship the Vengeful Spirit during the climax of the Battle of Terra.
  • Frostfang - Frostfang is a mighty Frost Blade crafted centuries ago by the Iron Priest Fergus Forgrim, the famed master craftsman of the Space Wolves Chapter. Its chainsaw blade is fashioned from a rare metal that was created using a secret technique that died with the ancient Iron Priest. It was given to Ragnar Blackmane by House Belisarius as a reward for protecting its ruling Celestarch from an assassin.
  • Glaives Encarmine - The Glaives Encarmine are broad, two-handed blades wielded by the Blood Angels' Sanguinary Guard. Crafted long ago by using forgotten methods and techniques, few weapons in the Blood Angels' armouries approach the elegance and mastery of manufacture embodied in the Glaive Encarmine. In battle, a skilled Battle-Brother can wield such a weapon as easily as he might a combat knife, sweeping it back and forth in swift, graceful arcs of death and taking life with each effortless blow.
  • Heavenfall Blades - The Heavenfall Blades are a quintumvirate of legendary Power Swords wielded by the highest-ranking members of the Inner Circle of the Dark Angels Space Marine Chapter. According to Chapter lore, the Heavenfall Blades were cut from a single block of obsidian that formed the core of a meteorite that struck The Rock, the Chapter's mobile fortress-monastery, in orbit around the Feral World of Al Baradad, shortly after the fall of Caliban. Each of these blades are carried by a Master of the Chapter and is as potent a symbol of their rank as it is deadly. Below, are the known Heavenfall Blades that exist:
    • Sword of Secrets - The Sword of Secrets is the mightiest of the Heavenfall Blades, and is wielded by Azrael, the current Supreme Grand Master of the Dark Angels. Its blade is so incredibly well-crafted that it has not chipped nor lost its razor-sharp edge over its many millennia of bloody use. Only the Supreme Grand Master knows that it is also the only device that allows access to the deepest known dungeon in The Rock. Fitting the blade into a cleft in the wall unlocks the iron gate leading to a dark tunnel and the rune-protected cell in which the Arch-Heretic Luther is imprisoned.
    • Sword of Silence - In times of need, Belial, the Grand Master of the Deathwing (1st) Company, wields the famous master-crafted Power Sword known as the Sword of Silence. This sword is one of a quadrumvirate of legendary swords collectively known as the Heavenfall Blades. These formidable weapons are only carried by the highest-ranking members of the Inner Circle of the Dark Angels. The Chapter's lore states that these blades were forged from the core of a meteorite that struck The Rock in orbit around the Feral World of Al Baradad. The blades wielded by the Grand Master of the Deathwing and the Master of the Ravenwing also utilise small amounts of the obsidian taken from the meteorite in their working.
    • Raven Sword - This infamous master-crafted Power Sword is one of a quadrumvirate of legendary swords collectively known as the Heavenfall Blades. These formidable weapons are only carried by the highest-ranking members of the Dark Angels' Inner Circle. Chapter lore states that these blades were forged from the core of a meteorite that struck The Rock in orbit around the Feral World of Al Baradad. The blades wielded by the Master of the Deathwing and the Master of the Ravenwing also utilise small amounts of the obsidian taken from the meteorite in their working. It is also said that a small portion of this meteoric substance was despatched to each of the Dark Angels' Successor Chapters, so that the senior members of the Unforgiven's own Inner Circles would also bear the same heritage forged in steel as those borne by the Masters of the Dark Angels. The Raven Sword is currently in the possession of the Master of the Ravenwing, Captain Sammael.
    • Fellbane - One of the legendary Power Swords collectively known as the Heavenfall Blades. These formidable weapons are carried only by the highest-ranking members of the Dark Angels' Inner Circle. Chapter lore states that these blades were forged from the core of a meteorite that struck The Rock in orbit around the Feral World of Al Baradad. Fellbane is currently in the possession of Master Balthasar, Captain of the Dark Angels' 5th Company.
    • Sword of Sanctity - The sword was gifted to Grand Master Orias, the first lord of the Disciples of Caliban who fell in battle against the Orks of the Quolon Pass. The sword was recovered about the 970.M41 by Grand Master Nakir of the Consecrators Chapter, who 30 years later offered it to the Supreme Grand Master Azrael of the Dark Angels, with the intention of returning the blade to its proper master. Azrael answered that, "It has found its proper master. It is not only yours by right of recovery, but you would bring honour to the cousin of my own blade", and gave it back to Nahir.
  • Monster Slayer of Caliban - This ancient Power Sword of the Dark Angels Chapter was traditionally bestowed upon the most honourable knight of The Order before the onset of a long quest into the wilds of Caliban. Its well-honed blade is empowered by a force generator of magnificent strength; however; over the ages, it has grown somewhat temperamental, and the know-how to fix such ancient technology has passed beyond what the Techmarines of the Dark Angels can now repair in the late 41st Millennium. It is believed that as long as its owner stays pure of mind, the Monster Slayer of Caliban will strike down even the greatest of foes. This has been proven countless times, perhaps most famously when Master Mortifer wielded the blade to dispatch three hulking Carnifexes. It is said that Mortifer later lost his faith, and the sword fizzled out at a critical moment and could not penetrate even the crude armour of an Ork Warlord.
  • Perfidious Relic of the Unforgiven - Borne by the mysterious Watchers in the Dark, these are ancient relics of the old Ist Legion that have been recaptured by the Deathwing and sometimes carried into battle by the wraith-like figures. The exact nature or function of most of these revered relics is unknown, for they are as mysterious as the cowled figures that bear them. What is known is their effect on the battlefield, for their presence alone dampens the power of enemy psykers and fills the Dark Angels' opponents with feelings of dread.
  • The Pale Spear - This was one of a number of strange and esoteric weapons associated with Alpharius, Primarch of the XXth Legion, and rumoured to be a strange xenos artefact whose forging predated even the rise of the Eldar. This double-bladed spear flickered seemingly out of phase with the material universe when wielded, emitting an eerie and otherworldly howling, and was able to pierce any physical defence it encountered without impediment, ripping them apart at a molecular level. Against living matter, it inflicted hideously gaping bloodless wounds as the flesh where it struck dissolved into oily smoke.
  • Soulspear - The Soulspear was an ancient Imperial Fists' Chapter relic wielded by the Primarch Rogal Dorn during the Great Crusade. It was forged from lost archeotech by the hand of the Emperor Himself, and gifted to His son. In battle it acted as a Warp Vortex weapon, able to cut through anything. This sacred artefact was entrusted to the Imperial Fists' Successor Chapter, the Soul Drinkers, when the Legion was split during the Second Founding. The spear was lost for over ten thousand standard years before the Chapter discovered its whereabouts on an old derelict starfort. Upon destroying the starfort's defenders, the Soul Drinkers made their way to a treasure room in which the Soulspear was kept, where it was then stolen from their grasp by the Adeptus Mechanicus. In their obsessive need to obtain this sacred relic, the ensuing crisis resulted in a chain of events that saw the Soul Drinkers' declared Excommunicate Traitoris by the Inquisition. The Soul Drinkers eventually recovered the Soulspear, which was used by their Chapter Master Sarpedon to slay a Greater Daemon of Tzeentch named Abraxes.
  • Spear of Russ - The Spear of Russ was an ancient Chapter relic once wielded by the Primarch Leman Russ of the Space Wolves Legion during the glory days of the Great Crusade. It had been kept for millennia at a sacred shrine on the planet Garm, waiting for the day Russ would return for the Last Battle. But an arch-heretic named Sergius had stolen the spear during a bloody uprising on Garm, and Ragnar Blackmane, then a Blood Claw in Berek Thunderfist's Great Company, had been among the warriors sent to crush the revolt. After numerous battles, Ragnar came face-to-face with his old nemesis Madox, who had manipulated Sergius into taking the spear in an effort to summon Magnus the Red, the Thousand Sons Legion's infernal Primarch, into the physical realm. The foul sorcerer nearly succeeded, but just as Magnus began to cross the threshold from the depths of the warp, Ragnar seized the spear from Sergius and hurled the legendary weapon at the fearsome primarch. The spear struck Magnus like a thunderbolt and the Daemon Prince was hurled back into the raging maelstrom of the warp. Garm had been saved, but the Spear of Russ had been lost, possibly forever. As "punishment", Ragnar was sent to Terra in exile by the Great Wolf Logan Grimnar to serve in the Wolfblade, an ancient Honour Guard comprised of Astartes from the Space Wolves Chapter who protect the Navigators' House Belisarius on Terra, in accordance with an ancient pact forged at the time of the Great Crusade over ten millennia ago. With the aid of his fellow Wolfblades, Ragnar later managed to also recover the Spear of Russ on the Daemon World of Charys with the aid of the Space Wolves' long-lost 13th Great Company. This act redeemed Ragnar in the eyes of his Battle-Brothers and he was reinstated as a member of Berek Thunderfist's Great Company after he returned from his time as a Wolfblade.
  • Spear of Telesto - The Spear of Telesto was an ancient Chapter relic wielded by the Primarch Sanguinius of the Blood Angels Legion during the Great Crusade. It was forged from lost archeotech by the hand of the Emperor Himself, and gifted to His angelic son. Within the fortress-monastery of the Blood Angels on their homeworld of Baal, the Spear of Telesto is shown being used by the Primarch against the Slaughter-Lord Morroga on the Tapestries of Riga. The blade itself, an elongated tear cut with a hollow in the centre, represented the single drop of blood that Sanguinius shed when he swore fealty to the Emperor. Glittering with an inner light, it rested atop a sculpted haft that showed the angel of blood clad in the monastic vestments of a Sanguinary High Priest. His perfect face was lost in a voluminous hood and his mighty angel wings spread against the air; and below that was a single Purity Seal that bore the personal mark of the Emperor. In combat, the Spear is able to emit a powerful blast of energy which can vaporise anyone who does not possess the blood of Sanguinius in his veins. Originally thought to have been lost during the Horus Heresy, with the discovery of documents relating to its whereabouts on the world of Evangelion in the late 41st Millennium, the Blood Angels' Battle Barge Bellus was sent to recover this revered artefact. The sacred weapon was found amongst the Ork-held systems on the borders of the Segmentum Obscurus by a team led by Inquisitor Ramius Stele.
  • Spear of Vulkan - This is a mighty relic Power Weapon of the Salamanders Chapter that takes the form of a huge halberd, once wielded by the Primarch Vulkan himself. The weapon is currently in the hands of Vulkan He'stan, the Forgefather of the Chapter.
  • Sword of Dorn - The blade was carried by Rogal Dorn, Primarch of the Imperial Fists Legion, and was shattered when Dorn broke it over his knee after returning from Horus' flagship Vengeful Spirit with the broken body of the Emperor at the end of the Battle of Terra. Dorn vowed never to wield the blade again as a penance for his failure to protect the Emperor. The Imperial Fists Legion's First Captain Sigismund kept the shattered blade and had part of it forged into the weapon known as the Sword of the High Marshals that is a relic of the Black Templars Chapter, as a reminder of the duty and sacrifice expected of the Sons of Dorn. The broken blade resides in the halls of the Eternal Crusader, the Battle Barge and flagship of the greatest of the Black Templar Crusade Fleets.
  • Sword of the High Marshals - As a sign of his office, the current High Marshal Helbrecht wields the potent Chapter relic known as the Sword of the High Marshals, which was forged from the remnants of the sword of the Primarch Rogal Dorn of the Imperial Fists Legion from which the Black Templars were spawned. According to legend, Dorn broke the sword across his knee after the Horus Heresy for failing to defend the Emperor of Mankind from Horus, never wielding it again. It was decreed by the Black Templar's first High Marshal, Sigismund, that the weapon carried by all High Marshals would forever after remind them of their duty to atone for their Primarch's failure by incorporating the pieces of Dorn's sword in its forging.
  • Teeth of the Blizzard - The Teeth of the Blizzard is a relic Frost Blade of the Space Wolves Chapter. During a Space Wolves deployment to drive back splinter elements of Hive Fleet Behemoth, the leading Pack, led by none other than the Great Wolf Logan Grimnar, became surrounded when hundreds of voracious Tyranid bioforms burst from the ground behind them. The Pack fought ferociously to defend their Lord, and one Wolf Guard named Ralaff leapt on the back of a monstrous Trygon to slice its throat with his Frost Blade. Ralaff died from his injuries, but his actions allowed reinforcements to reach the Great Wolf in time. His Frost Blade became a revered relic of the Chapter in testament to Ralaff's valour.
  • Traitor's Bane - Traitor's Bane is a potent master-crafted Force Sword wielded by the Dark Angels' Chief Librarian, Grand Master Ezekiel, that radiates psychic power. Phased crystalline patterns along the Force Sword's blade coil iridescent psychic energy around it like a snake. This fell blade is rumoured to possess the trapped spirits of those Fallen it has slain in battle and are now entrapped within. It is said that the blade grows darker in aspect, the shadows drawing in around it, whenever one of the Fallen Angels is near.

Champion's Blade

A Champion's Blade is a potent Power Sword, usually a Relic Blade of the Chapter, that is wielded by an Adeptus Astartes Chapter Champion on the field of battle in defence of the honour of his brethren, his Chapter and the Emperor Himself. A Champion's Blade often allows its user to strike more swiftly and accurately than other Power Weapons of similar type, which is why it is held as a sacred relic of the Chapter.


  • Chapter Approved: Second Book of the Astronomican (2003), "The Emperor's Champion", pg. 76
  • Codex Adeptus Astartes - Space Marines (8th Edition), pg. 152
  • Codex: Armageddon (3rd Edition), pg. 22
  • Codex: Black Templars (4th Edition), pg. 44
  • Codex: Blood Angels (5th Edition)
  • Codex: Dark Angels (6th Edition), pp. 52-53, 56, 58-59
  • Codex: Dark Angels (4th Edition), pp. 42-45, 46
  • Codex: Dark Angels (3rd Edition), pg. 18
  • Codex: Angels of Death (2nd Edition), pp. 13, 41, 62
  • Codex: Space Marines (5th Edition), pg. 91, 99
  • Codex: Space Wolves (5th Edition)
  • Codex: Ultramarines (2nd Edition)
  • Deathwatch: Core Rulebook (RPG), pg. 169
  • Deathwatch: Honour the Chapter (RPG), pp. 13-14
  • Index Astartes II, "Emperor's Fist - The Imperial Fists Space Marine Chapter" and "Righteous Zeal - The Black Templars Space Marine Chapter" by Graham McNeill
  • Warlords of the Dark Millennium - Azrael, pp. 31-32
  • Warlords of the Dark Millennium - Belial, pp. 8, 22-23
  • Warlords of the Dark Millennium - Sammael, pp. 9, 32-33
  • White Dwarf 311 (US), "Chosen of the Emperor" by Nick Kyme, pg. 23
  • White Dwarf 302 (UK), "Heroes of the Imperium", pp. 84-85
  • White Dwarf 245 (US), "The Emperor's Champion" (leaf insert)
  • Blood Angels Novel Series:
    • Deus Encarmine (Novel) by James Swallow
    • Deus Sanguinius (Novel) by James Swallow
  • Bloodquest Novel Series:
    • Bloodquest I by Gordon Rennie and illustrated by Colin MacNeil
    • Bloodquest II: Into the Eye of Terror by Gordon Rennie and illustrated by Colin MacNeil
    • Bloodquest III: The Daemon's Mark by Gordon Rennie and illustrated by Colin MacNeil
    • Bloodquest: Prisoners of the Eye of Terror (Audio Book)
  • Mechanicum (Novel) by Graham McNeill, pp. 286-287, 320-323
  • Ascension of Balthasar (Audio Drama) by C.Z. Dunn
  • The Unforgiven (Novel) by Gav Thorpe, pp. 141-142
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